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Biography of William A. Kelsoe

William Austin Kelsoe was born in Greenville, Bond county, Illinois, February 1, 1851. Upon the death of his mother, a few weeks later, he was committed to the care of Mrs. Sarah Phelps, of Pocahontas, in the same county, and her daughters, one of whom is now Mrs. Kate L. Doubt, a resident of St. Louis. From the age of two years until he reached manhood he was a member of the family of William and Martha Greenwood Watkins and lived with them in Pocahontas, Greenville, Vandalia and East St. Louis, Illinois, also for three years on a farm a few miles northeast of Highland, Illinois. His father, Alexander Kelsoe, circuit clerk of Bond county for twelve years, died in January, 1862, and Mr. Watkins, who was his mother’s brother, was appointed his guardian. He attended the public schools of three of the towns named and also the Greenville Institute, a private school for boys conducted by Rev. Samuel W. Marston, father of Edgar L. Marston, a St. Louis attorney in the ’80s and now a prominent New York banker. Mr. Kelsoe entered McKendree College, Lebanon, Illinois, in the fall of 1866 and during the winter of 1870-1 he taught a country school in St. Clair county, Illinois. In 1872 he received the degree of A. B. from McKendree and three years later that of A. M., the intervening time being spent, for the most part, at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, which he entered in 1872 with one of his McKendree classmates, Dr. A. C. Bernays, later internationally famous as a surgeon, and Robert Luedeking, later dean of...

Biography of Charles B. Johnson, M. D.

Charles B. Johnson, M. D. Valuable work in his profession and an unusual variety of experience contribute to make the career of Dr. C. B. Johnson one of note in Champaign County, where he has lived for the past forty-six years. Doctor Johnson is a veteran Union soldier, is grandson of a Revolutionary soldier, and’ during the half century since he came out of the Northern army he has been in the active practice of medicine and is still a competent member of his profession and one of Champaign County’s most useful citizens. Doctor Johnson was born at Pocahontas in Bond County, Illinois, October 8, 1843. His grandfather, Charles Johnson, was a native of North Carolina, and went with the troops of that state to battle against the British armies and the Tories in the times of the struggle for independence. Doctor Johnson’s father was James Johnson, an early settler in Illinois and a farmer. In 1849 he went out to California when that was the mecca of gold seekers and adventurers from all parts of the world, and he died soon after his arrival on the gold coast. James Johnson married Elizabeth Jane Volentine. Doctor Johnson spent his early life on a farm, attended the public schools, and early showed a tendency and desire for studious pursuits. On August 7, 1862, he enlisted in Company F of the One Hundred Thirtieth Illinois Infantry. He was with that regiment in all its campaigns, marches and battles for more than three years. He was finally mustered out in August, 1865, several months after the close of actual hostilities. On coming...

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